We all dream about the theoretical “greener grass” that seems to be everywhere we are not.
Social media make this misconception worse. Everyone has better things, a brighter future, or a less troubled past. We share pretty pictures and hide dirty laundry.
Our perception of life outside our own gets skewed, leaving us thinking we missed out somewhere.
We deserve the good stuff, right?
How can we get some of this “greener grass” so others will look at us the same way?
While out daydreaming through the lens of my camera the other day, I snapped a picture of the mystical future.
In professional terms; this picture was a pixilated illustration of a hypothetical place that creates pause for many; an image of the metaphorical greener pastures.
The green grass on the other side. The place we all see as “over there” where things always seem better. In my imagination, I see it allegorically right here in the picture I snapped through my magical lens.
It started me thinking about how we contemplate moments that fall outside the here-and-now and then mistakenly we try to use those philosophically non-existent orbs in time to mentally negotiate the quality of our lives.
We define ourselves by what we see in snippets of other peoples’ timeline.
This is a mental exercise that leaves us exhausted.
We wonder about the past. We ask what if’s?
To date, I’ve met no one who possessed the ability to change their past, but that rarely stops us all from trying.
“If only,” begins a group of words that when completed don’t form just a sentence. These words form a regret.
Regret lays a firm foundation to build both anger and depression; two emotions that never work together for the common good.
The energy spent to create the dwelling they represent will never stand the test of time. The only inhabitant in such a place is envy.
So was I wrong to take a picture of the greener grass I dream about?
I don’t think so.
It’s not bad to daydream, but it is important to stick to roads found on the map of truth and reality as we take these little mental side trips.
The grass will always be greener looking outward because our own imagination cultivates it.
It always contains goals we hope to accomplish and visions of places we feel compelled to go, or things we yearn to gain.
And when we look backward, we all do it with 20/20 vision.
Consider why this is always true. How many of us dream for things we don’t want, plan trips to places we hate, or hope we can fail at the goals we set?
Understanding this simple, logical concept helps ground me back in the moments I can control.
It allows me to stop wishing for the green grass I see over the fence or across the pond and fertilize my own lawn.
I can then spend the energy and focus on the goals I have already and use my dreaming to come up with others I want to accomplish.
When I try to live as if I am already on “the other side,” I find people look to me for ideas and encouragement.
“If only,” will then become, “when I,” and I put the words together not to form just a sentence, but to form a manifesto.
Challenge yourself to do the same and share your vision with someone else.
Use the green grass as a place to lie down and watch the clouds float by.